Tue. 5/12 Daily COVID-19Update


We are hosting another Facebook Live Town Hall tomorrow (Wed. 5/13) at 5:00pm. The topic will be COVID-19 and the bailout of corporations, all while working people are being left out in the lurch. Amid the pandemic, U.S. billionaires’ grew nearly 10% while over 20 million people filed for unemployment. In Hawaii, unemployment hit 34%.

Congress continues to deliberate over relief packages that bailout corporations but provide minimal relief for working people. Our Hawaii State Legislature is back in session to determine the state budget, and we are urging them to prioritize Hawaii’s working people.

Join our Facebook Live Town Hall tomorrow (Wed. 5/13) at 5:00pm by going to our Facebook page: http://facebook.com/uniteherehawaii/live

2020 AFL-CIO Hawaii Scholarship Recipient

Jamie Butin, daughter of Local 5 member Janice Butin from Royal Hawaiian Hotel, wrote an essay about Unions. Her piece was chosen as one of the winners for the AFL-CIO 2020 Scholarship. Click here to watch her interview video.

Click here to read her full essay.



House Democrats unveil new $3 trillion coronavirus relief bill (CNBC, May 12, 2020)

  • Nearly $1 trillion in relief for state and local governments
  • A second round of direct payments of $1,200 per person, and up to $6,000 for a household
  • About $200 billion for hazard pay for essential workers
  • $75 billion for coronavirus testing and contact tracing
  • An extension of the $600 per week federal unemployment insurance benefit through January
  • $175 billion in rent, mortgage and utility assistance
  • Subsidies and a special Affordable Care Act enrollment period to people who lose their employer-sponsored health coverage
  • More money for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, including a 15% increase in the maximum benefit
  • Measures designed to buoy small businesses and help them keep employees on payroll
  • Money for election safety during the pandemic and provisions to make voting by mail easier
  • Relief for the U.S. Postal Service

Long Beach hotel workers call for extended health insurance during coronavirus pandemic (Press Telegram, May 12, 2020)

Local 11 workers protested in a car caravan for extended health coverage, mainly against some Long Beach Hyatt hotels that still haven’t agreed to expanded coverage yet.

Applications for Kokua Restaurant Workers’ Fund now open (Pacific Business News, May 12, 2020

Restaurant and bar workers can apply here for a $250 food card on first come first served basis in a Food and Wine festival charity program, it currently has $100k in funds and hopes to raise $250K for the program.

With cases on the low, Hawaii retailers are outlining their plans to reopen (Hawaii News Now)

Malls on Oahu will reopen on Friday with food courts remaining closed and restaurants still take out only. Typical protocols like mask wearing will be required. Ala Moana, Pearlridge, International Marketplace and Royal Hawaiian Center will have various hours and retail outlets open.

Monday brought hundreds of visitors to Hawaii, some to stay in illegal vacation rentals (Star Advertiser, May 12, 2020)

Nearly three hundred visitors arrived on Monday. Rental car companies are banned from renting to people under 14-day quarantine. 4% of arrivals are staying in vacation rentals, which are considered non-essential businesses.

Report: 70% of Hawaii hotels that are open agree to issue single-use keys (Hawaii News Now, May 12, 2020)

There are 91 hotels open statewide and 63 of them so far have agreed to issue quarantined visitors a one-time use key upon check-in, the theory being they will be caught by the front desk if they leave the room and cannot re-enter.

Employers rush to adopt virus screening. The tools may not help much. (Pacific Business News, May 12, 2020)

The article touches on tech like temperature cameras and app-based tracking and contact tracing that allow businesses to react to COVID. But it raises the concern about how technology is encroaching into the workplace and creating a new norm for Orwellian surveillance, and concerns about how health information may be used to discriminate against workers and how the technology is generally just not effective at dealing with COVID control.

COVID Cases Today

World: Cases: 4.2M (+100k).  Deaths: 291k(+5k).
USA: Cases: 1.37M (+30k).  Deaths: 82.3k (+2k).  Total Tested: 9.6M (+220k).
Hawaii: Cases:  635 (+1).  Deaths: 17 (+0).  Hospitalized: 81 (+0). Recovered: 563 (+2).